All systems go for Alice’s new chair

.quiz night bfor alice appeal'l/sutton rbl club'04/06/11'f/pres of e/elloe lions mary walden and husband alan with supporters and qiizzers
.quiz night bfor alice appeal'l/sutton rbl club'04/06/11'f/pres of e/elloe lions mary walden and husband alan with supporters and qiizzers
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THE parents of Alice Bates are still reeling at the generosity of Spalding Guardian readers who gave their little girl the chance to move around independently for the first time in her life.

The Long Sutton family’s appeal to raise £8,000 for a powered wheelchair was completed in just seven weeks.

Mum Charlotte and dad Andy are about to place an order for the chair – and it will arrive in about six weeks’ time, giving cerebral palsy suffer Alice (4) the chance to play with her brothers and sisters during the holidays.

It will also mean Alice will be able to power herself around when she starts school in September.

Andy said: “It’s brilliant. I am still a bit in shock that it happened so quickly.” And Charlotte told us: “It’s amazing.”

Among the last few donations were £300 from an East Elloe Lions quiz night and £1,500 from the staff at Bakkavor, Sutton Bridge.

Premier Foods at Long Sutton – which gave £500 to the Alice Appeal – also supplied hampers for the Lions quiz prizes and Long Sutton Royal British Legion donated the £40 hall hire fee for the quiz night back to the Alice appeal.

Bakkavor at Sutton Bridge has 200 employees but its Site Employee Forum – which represents all employees – unanimously agreed to support Alice.

Site Employee Forum spokeswoman Jacky Mitchell said: “We were lucky enough to meet Alice and her family when they visited our site. She is such a lovely, happy little girl with a beautiful smile.

Charlotte said the family was overwhelmed by the support given for Alice – and they are keeping a scrapbook so Alice herself will know when she’s older just how many people helped her.

Charlotte said: “She will be able to look at all the wonderful people she met, read every kind word and know what a special girl she is – and feel just as happy and honoured as I do now.”

nThe first donation to Alice’s appeal was £1,000 from The Lincolnshire Free Press Children’s Fund, which exists to help all disadvantaged children in our circulation area. We welcome donations all year round so we, in turn, can help children like Alice.